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Sep 4, 2013

Carnival Mas Camp 2013 Kicks Off In Belize City

Mas camps, the preliminary to this year’s Carnival, opened on Tuesday night in Belize City. Both junior and senior bands were judged and as anticipated, the energy and the hype of the spirit of carnival prevailed. The colorful costumes set the tone for the themes of the different bands which are depicting national issues such as the Chiquibul, Independence and street violence. Duane Moody was out with the bands on Tuesday night.

 

Duane Moody, Reporting

A whopping twelve bands—six juniors and six seniors—will be taking to the streets of Belize City for one of the biggest events on the September Celebrations Calendar…it’s the 2013 Carnival Road March. But before that event gets off on the fourteenth of September, a prelim to the road march is of course the energy driven mas camps. While the third to the fifth are slated as the days for the mas camps, last week, two bands were judged early…that’s because the junior bands from the south will be competing for the first time ever in the Belize City Carnival Road March. They are the Seine Bight’s Irahunu Mas Band and the Wipeout Carnival Band out of Punta Gorda.

 

But in the city on Tuesday night, one junior and two senior bands presented their costumes to the judges in the preliminaries of the carnival. The first stop was to the juniors, the Sunshine Masqueraders. This year, they are channeling the encroachment and rape of the Chiquibul National Park.

 

Marie Dixon, Committee Member, Sunshine Masqueraders

Marie Dixon

“The name of our project as you can see, we are depicting, Protect our Natural Resource.”

 

Duane Moody

“Why you chose that and what we will be able to see come the fourteenth of September for the Carnival.”

 

Marie Dixon

“We chose this topic because as we read in the newspaper, as we listen on the radio, we can hear about the intrusion—invaders just raiding our forests. They are taking our rosewood away, killing our macaw and even our tapir. We chose three segments as I said this is the Xate, here we are depicting King Hades, King of Destruction. They take our rosewood, our ate and our tapir and they take it across the border and these are to be protected and we want to bring awareness so that people can understand that these are our natural resources and we need to have them in our environment to protect our ecosystem. The last section, we decided to have peace—this is where we get the clause fiction and non-fiction. This is the fairy.”

Some five blocks away was another camp filled with gyrating bodies and revelers in red, white and blue. It was senior band, Soca Warriors. They have been competing for the past five years with Jayson Garcia as their leader.

 

Jayson Garcia

Jayson Garcia, Soca Warriors

“This year you can expect a lot of hypeness, energy and togetherness from our group.”

 

Duane Moody

“You are no stranger to carnival; you’ve dance as king before and I think won several times. What is it that you are bringing to the table to ensure that you seal that deal for your group?”

 

Jayson Garcia

“Well the past two years, I wasn’t ready, but I make sure that I ready this year because I know that I could be in the top three. So I wah make sure we deh ina di top three and we ready this year.”

 

Duane Moody

“What’s the theme?”

 

Jayson Garcia

“The theme: Belize fi me, Independence fi you; wave yo flag wi thirty-two. Under that theme we have three sections; independence, Belize and the flag, our country flag.”

 

Our final stop for the night was the Trench Town Masqueraders. And unlike the first two groups, there were no one dancers in the street. It’s the first time that they are competing in the carnival.

 

Patricia Flowers, Trench Town Masqueraders

Patricia Flowers

“I’m a newborn. I am out there, with or without the amount. Carnival is about fun…nothing should stop you about being out there once you love carnival.”

 

Duane Moody

“What inspired you to create a mas band?”

 

Patricia Flowers

“I’ve been in carnival since I was five. I’ve dance with Black Pearl, Jump Street and the biggest band ever—South Side Masqueraders, Soca Moca Ocean Moca. But this year they decided not to come out and I back them out all the way so here I am—with one foot in and one foot out—with my name and their strength always.My theme is bringing back the Old Belize celebration. Why? Belize is full of negative vibes. I mean we have a lot of violence, killing, bloodshed…we have a generation of negativity.”

 

By the time the judging was finished, several of the band members started the jump up on Zacaranda Street. So…that was day one of mas camp 2013…and there’s two more to go….you ready? Duane Moody for News Five.

 

Tonight judging continues as four bands will be featured. They are: Pickstock Masqueraders, Jump Street Posse, Eternity Mas Band and Black Pearl.

 

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